Once in a while Twitter users will come up with a hashtag that reflects so many people's everyday lives.
On Tuesday, Mic.com notes, Asians across the Twitter world took up the hashtag #BeingAsian to highlight some of the hilarious truths about having an Asian background and some of the daily struggles people of colour have to face in North America.
The hashtag was first tweeted by 17-year-old Michael Tarui, a Twitter user behind the @AsianAdvocacy Twitter page, and originally started in a group chat, NBC reports.
I'm in a group chat and we've decided we should start a conversation of what it's like #BeingAsian and the racism that comes with it.
— ️ (@AsianAdvocacy) June 28, 2016
Tarui wanted to discuss the racism that comes with being Asian on a larger scale. Soon, people began to share their own experiences, both funny and upsetting.
"Confronting issues such as the racism we face and the internalized racism it has caused in many of us is important as it helps us move forward ... We also believed it was important we discussed the issues highly prevalent in our communities such as racism against one another, colourism, and anti-blackness," Tarui told the news site in an e-mail.
The mix of tweets talk about everything from the age-old stereotype of all Asians eating dogs to Asian moms using cookie tins for sewing products to how one user said, "Asian women are over sexualized [and] seen as nothing but exotic [and] submissive while Asian men are de-sexualized [and] only seen as nerds."
Check out some of the tweets below and follow along (and add your own experiences) here.
#beingasian means i just left a debate on whether it's "that bad" to cast a white person made to "look asian." so weird that's a debate
— Mallika Rao (@mallika_rao) June 29, 2016
Harmful skin bleaching products marketed to both men & women, propelled by anti-blackness/shadeism. Let's talk about this, #BeingAsian
— Nagma (@_nagmak) June 29, 2016
#BeingAsian having ur peers mock the nail salon ladies accent, when she at least learned English & theyre too dumb to learn another language
— alyssa (@Alythuh) June 29, 2016
#beingasian is having ppl tell u ur food smells bad, ur language sounds funny,but saying ur culture is awesome! when it fits their aesthetic
— j (@rowoonstae) June 29, 2016
#BeingAsian means people trying to guess what kind of Asian you are and then spit out every ethnicity they can think of 🙄
— Cherokee Princess (@zoe_dejecacion) June 29, 2016
#BeingAsian is seeing food you grew up with used in gimmicky Buzzfeed videos to gross out white people
— Thu (@acciobeastmode) June 29, 2016
#BeingAsian means that you hear the word "orientalish" dropped in front of your face because people don't see you as a POC
— Sydney Chin (@CuteAngryAsian) June 30, 2016
#beingasian constantly referred to as "exotic" -- dehumanizing and objectifying POC because they don't fit the anglo-saxon vision
— mung-bean (@basedjensus) June 30, 2016
#BeingAsian means we must be allies to other communities of color. We must combat anti-blackness behavior within our own communities.
— Rome (@JeromeAtendido) June 29, 2016
#BeingAsian calling every Filipino person your Tito, Tita, or Ate even if you're not related to them.
— Shit Filipinos Do (@filipinoposts) June 29, 2016
ALSO ON HUFFPOST:
asian grading system
C- can't eat dinner
D- don't come home
F- find another family #BeingAsian
— denise :) (@floofyirwin) June 29, 2016
Badami's novel, The Hero's Walk, is set in a small city in the Bay of Bengal. It tells the story of Sripathi Rao, a copywriter who, despite going through his own struggles, has to pick up the pieces after his granddaughter is orphaned by a tragic accident. His journey to Canada to find the relatives of her Canadian father is an integral part of the story, but larger themes of family and coming together through struggle are woven through the novel. This book won the 2001 Commonwealth Writer's prize, and was also a pick in this year's Canada Reads selections.
Giller Prize winner Vincent Lam's first novel, The Headmaster's Wager, tells the story of a gambling headmaster of a prestigious English school in Saigon. It's a narrative of family, vice, loneliness and love, set against the backdrop of the Vietnam War.
Told from the perspective of a 13-year-old girl, Lynne Kutsukake's debut novel is set in post-war Tokyo, and examines her repatriation to Japan after the release of her family from a Canadian internment camp. Also woven throughout the novel are tales of her classmate's missing sister and a young Japanese-American soldier. We also encounter the themes of friendship, love and resilience.
Kim Thúy's Ru was the winner of Canada Reads 2015, as well as the 2010 Governor General's award for fiction (French language). This novel is a poetic telling of a journey from Saigon to Malaysia and eventually Quebec, the pursuit of dreams and new opportunities in a new country, and the joys and sorrows of the life that comes afterwards.
A journalist who splits her time between Vancouver and Hong Kong, Doretta Lau brings us her debut collection of short stories, How Does A Single Blade Of Grass Thank The Sun?. The collection examines the stories of a range of whimsical and diverse Asian-American characters who are grappling with coming of age, race, culture and what it means to be Canadian. This is a seriously fantastic collection from a fresh and intriguing new voice.
A Fine Balance, by Indian-born author, Rohinton Mistry, is a Giller Prize winner and a Booker Prize shortlist pick. It's set in an unidentified city in India, through the 1970s and '80s, during a turmoil called, "The Emergency." It follows the stories of several characters of diverse backgrounds, thrust together in the tumultuous times of economic uncertainty. This is an epic story of friendship, the challenges of changing times, and the strength and beauty of humanity.
This beautifully illustrated graphic novel, Skim, follows Kimberly Keiko "Skim" Cameron, as she and her fellow students deal with the suicide of a classmate and friend. Love, self-discovery, grief, depression and suicide are all dealt with in a poignant young adult-focused graphic narrative.
Ann Choi's debut novel, Kay's Lucky Coin Variety, brings us to 1980s Toronto. It's told from the perspective of a young, rebellious Korean girl. The complexities of life, love, family, relationships and the intersection of differing cultures are addressed in this very special novel.
Kogawa's award-winning novel, Obasan, was based on her own experiences of the internment and persecution of Japanese Canadians during the Second World War. This is a historically accurate and important novel depicting the problems of racism and intolerance. It's also about the after-effects of a too-often ignored part of our country's history.
The Cat's Table is a beautifully written story from award-winning author, Michael Ondaatje. A writer reflects on a formative trip taken on a 1950s ocean liner from Colombo to London. As a young boy, he explored the ship, interacting with the eclectic group of adults around him, and developing a friendship with two other boys his age. For all three, it's a journey of adventure and discovery. In a rather non-traditional coming-of-age tale, Ondaatje imbues childlike wonder and adventure amidst poetic prose. Magical!